Today I have just three items:
Addressing women in English
Phoenix Rising changes address
Dreambirdie addresses the madness of
1. Addressing women in English
As I explained yesterday, a correspondent mailed me to
explain that I had been addressing Ms. Amy Dockser Marcus
inappropriately, namely as if she were a Mrs.
Well, indeed I am sorry, and I also have changed it
today, but for a Dutchman without TV since 1970 and without having
spend time in England since 1984, and never having been in the US, the
proper modern usage when addressing women in English was not
very clear, especially since, having learned English in the early 1960ies, I
confused "Miss" and "Ms", while in Dutch the proprieties are precisely
the opposite of what they are, or seem to be, in English.
The explanation for modern English usage are here:
of which the first paragraph is as follows (quoted
minus some pronunciation details and notes):
Ms (UK) or Ms. (USA, Canada) (..) is an
English honorific used with the last name or full name of a
woman. According to
Emily Post Institute, Ms. is the default form of address for
women, regardless of marital status, in the U.S.
As opposed to "Miss" it is pronounced "Miz"
(approximately) - which has the following setback, also quoted from
Unfortunately, as "Ms" is easily misheard as "Miss", it is very
common for a woman who has expressed a preference for Ms to be
addressed as Miss by mistake. For instance, the following
conversation occurs frequently:
A: Hello, Mrs Example? B: Hi, it's actually Ms Example. A: Sorry,
I simply wasn't aware of the difference, and confused
"Miss" and "Ms", having learned that the latter abbreviates the former
in school, indeed from the Miss who taught English. Well... no longer,
effectively since the 1980ies, I learned from the above linked
article, that also shows that the usage in fact was proposed 110
years ago this very year, in 1901, in the US:
There is a void in the English language which, with some
diffidence, we undertake to fill. Every one has been put in an
embarrassing position by ignorance of the status of some woman. To
call a maiden Mrs is only a shade worse than to insult a matron with
the inferior title Miss. Yet it is not always easy to know the
Now, clearly, what is needed is a more comprehensive term which
does homage to the sex without expressing any views as to their
domestic situation, and what could be simpler or more logical than
the retention of what the two doubtful terms have in common. The
abbreviation "Ms" is simple, it is easy to write, and the person
concerned can translate it properly according to circumstances. For
oral use it might be rendered as "Mizz," which would be a close
parallel to the practice long universal in many bucolic regions,
where a slurred Mis' does duty for Miss and Mrs alike.
And indeed, while I dislike PC language, I like this
usage: Once understood - as I finally do - it is better
than e.g. the Dutch has, because it makes more distinctions and thus
leaves fewer ambiguities.
2. Phoenix Rising changes address
The forum about ME/CFS on Phoenix Rising. that figured
a lot in the Nederlogs for last year, at least during its first half
year, when I wrote quite a lot for it, and then removed myself from
it, but that I still follow, will have another web address as of
tonight. The new one - I have been told, I suppose correctly - is this
I could say a lot about PR-F, as I tend to abbreviate
the Phoenix Rising Forums, which I will leave presently unsaid, except
for noting three things in passing:
There are at present - today - 4462 members, of which
837 are active. When I left it in May last year, there were around
2000 members, and about as many active members as now (between 600 and
900, if I recall correctly), many of whom have between June 2010 and
September 2010 moved to the other MECFS-forum, from which I have been
removed in July, for a reason I will enter into below.
The brief summary of the numbers is that PR-F doesn't grow as fast as
last year, and does not have more active members as last year, but it
is currently the largest forum for persons with ME (I think).
The owner Cort Johnson has succeeded in making it a
non-profit charitable organization, that he names and describes as
Phoenix Rising -A
non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization dedicated to improving
the lives of people with chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) and other
The last part of this may turn out mistaken, but does conform to the
classification of the disease ME.
As the new address listed above shows, the PR-forums
now are called "me/forums",
which seems to me a correct choice of words, even if the currently
most used name
in the US is "CFS". But many patients, including me, consider this a
misnomer, that very well may have been designed to pooh-pooh the
disease, and so I agree with the namechange, even if one must keep
referring, willy nilly, to "CFS".
Also, one other change I noticed in the PR-forums is that there are
now at least 3 more administrators than there were not so long ago.
Anything more on PR-F?
Well, yes one more remark: I think I have verified to
my own satisfaction that advocacy, activism, and rational debate are
not very well possible on PR-F, for which one good reason is
that all manner of folks get ME/CFS, and write on PR-F, almost always
anonymously, and without any website through which they could be
better known, and usually without much knowledge of science, medicine,
psychology, psychiatry etc., for which see my
But it is a good place for persons with ME to find
folks similarly afflicted; to socialize with likeminded persons; and
to find information about ME/CFS.
3. Dreambirdie addresses the
madness of some "patients"
Last year I have written not only about and for PR-F,
but also for ME-F, as I call it, a forum that was started by _Kim_,
who was an excellent administrator of PR-F, who was not happy
with how things were done there, but was not allowed to discuss it
rationally and publicly by the owner of it all, and by a person who
calls himself CFS_Since_1998, who appears to have gotten rid of _Kim_
within two weeks, and quite a few others within a month, as detailed
e.g. here, in July 2010 and in August 2010:
Especially the last is a rather stunning summary of
whom Patricia Carter aka Wildaisy and CFS_Since_1998 aka Braveheart
(no not really ) succeeded in
driving away from their MECFS-forum, and where one also finds
described how Dreambirdie was removed by Wildaisy, who presently has
set herself up as "Director" of "The International ME Association":
July 22 (ca): Dreambirdie works very hard
to make a video about ME, in which she does not mention the site of
Mistress Carter and Master Since, because she thinks - correctly -
there is hardly any decent scientific documentation about ME on ME-F,
at this point in time. Now Dreambirdie was one of the members with most
posts on PR-F, is talented, and is normally a very peaceful Buddhist,
with care for all, and no unkind words for any.
Here is the message Mistress Carter (= Wildaisy) sent her, in
Dreambirdie's words on PR-F:
Unfortunately, I am being attacked on the "other forum"
for providing a link to this site
instead of theirs.
The message Wild Daisy sent you was:
You don't think for a minute anyone is buying your BS do you?
Of course, now that all the Good Science people have left PR
and come to this forum, no one on Cort's forum knows how to
interpret all the articles in their vast library (which Kim assembled,
before Cort chased her away).
I am so exhausted from
this kind of nasty. It really sucks.
Thus Dreambirdie, quoting The Fuehrerin Of ME-F.
A few days ago, my own site - this one, where you are reading this
or downloaded this from, which may in fact come from two different
places - was mentioned on PR-F, in the underlined link
Originally Posted by Ecoclimber
OMG! What a drama! I hate to say it, but this is EXACTLY
the kind of thing that will help perpetuate the image of CFS
patients as psych cases.
It would be funny, if it wasn't so horribly pathetic...
Well... I hope Dreambirdie is not tarring me with the
same brush as the owners of ME-F, but I don't really mind much,
because I clearly am different from anyone I know with ME and
have the academic degrees in - i.a. - psychology, acquired with ME,
that should show that my madness, if any, is not like that of others,
if my site doesn't show that, at least
to those who are truly intelligent.
But I do want to quote some things from earlier
Nederlogs that show, I think quite clearly, why Patricia Carter aka
Wildaisy and CFS_Since_1998 seem very bad news for me and ME, and
worthy of distrust, disbelief and skepticism. I quote three items, and
could quote many more:
A. Patricia Carter aka Wildaisy calls for poisoning
My feverish brain has been hard at work, and it has come up with
an idea. Since the CDC says this illness we have does not
exist, and the XMRV retrovirus does not exist, and therefore no
warning is necessary for us not to give blood, how about we call
Suppose people with CFS coordinate a day to go give blood.
Suppose each person gets videotape of himself or herself giving
blood, and puts those videotapes, in a bunch, on Youtube.
The drawbacks are that most of us have low blood volume, and it
would be a real sacrifice for us to give up a pint of our
blood. The second drawback is, of course, that we do not want
our blood to cause another person to develop this horrendous
illness. It is our belief that our blood might be likely to
cause infection in a recipient.
For the first problem, I have no solution. Who among us can
spare a pint of blood?
For the second, another person has suggested this solution.
Suppose after we videotape ourselves giving blood, we then
present a packet of papers containing the WPI 10-9-2009 paper
and the CDC paper, explaining that we believe our blood contains
deadly material which may cause infection with ME/CFS. Would
they still use that blood? And further, we can videotape their
How do you feel about this suggestion?
I did not feel well about this, as I explained
briefly, since at the time I was almost wholly dysfunctional because
of a heath-wave in Amsterdam, which is one of the things I don't
handle well at all with ME:
B. "Eric Johnson from I&I" as neo-Nietzschean
There was someone on PR-F who called himself "Eric
Johnson" (like the wellknown advocate and ME-patient Erik Johnson) who
was allowed by Patricia Carter aka Wildaisy and CFS_Since_1998 to
publish reams of insane baloney to the effect that Wessely and Reeves
are completely right about ME/CFS-patients, as were Beard and McEvedy,
besides revealing a very ugly side to this "Eric Johnson":
CCC-defined CFS equals neurasthenia, and I think some non-CCC CFS
cases are also the same disease. But I can't prove either, of course. I
am not 100% confident about neurasthenia, rather much less than 100%.
I read/skimmed some of the old books on
neurasthenia by Beard(?) or whoever it was that originated that
diagnosis in the late 19th century. They are on google books. I
couldn't find reference to post-exertional exacerbation in the
neurasthenia literature, despite finding extensive descriptions of
symptoms. If someone can find this smoking gun then I would be
much more confident that neurasthenia is CFS.
Also, while I'm agnostic and basically a Nietzschean (which
makes it pretty hard to be a christian), I suspect that the partial
eclipse of the christian faith and world order may have been the
largest cause of fascism and bolshevism. They each (separately)
furnished a trans-personal and trans-mortal meaning of existence, to
replace the eclipsed christian one.
And so on and on and on and on. I tried to move
Patricia Carter aka Wildaisy - meanwhile having found that
CFS_Since_1998 has no morality or conscience I can see - to stop this
nutty nonsense, but she claimed that she lacked administrators, which
was just a lousy excuse to let mr. Johnson rave on and on:
You understand of course, I am speaking of neuroses solely as
uninterpreted raw phenomena, with no etiology implied. Perhaps the
term neuroses is too encrusted with the follies of the generations
of man, and someone can suggest a different word.
Many people can sense neurotic phenomena keenly, they can see
perfectly clearly that these are commoner in CFSers, and I imagine
that you won't dissuade them even if you want to do so. So, I don't
*raise* the topic, but if it ever comes up, which it does, I do not
There was one paper I actually sort of admired (grudgingly) about
stress contributing to MS. It entirely avoided retrospective
subjective ascertainment of stress. It simply examined whether there
was any correlation between one of a person's children having died (a
100% objective, ascertainable event) and the risk of that person later
getting MS (multiple sclerosis). There was a two-fold (or so)
elevation of risk. Still, there could be possible confounds.
I concluded from this that Patricia Carter aka
Wildaisy and CFS_Since_1998 either are CDC-paid folks or are utter
nutters, and still think so: You just do not publish this sort
of rot - and there was much, much more of the same or worse
quality - if you want to help patients with ME against
Reeves and Wessely; you do publish this manner of rot if you
want to help Reeves and Wessely.
Indeed, I got quite angry and wrote this
after which CFS_Since_1998 removed me from his and
Patricia Carter's site, accusing me of the many things he did:
C. I get accused of
the evil Patricia Carter and CFS_Since_1998 did:
A few months later, the moral degenerates CFS_since_1998 and moderator
Flo Benson, known as Advocate on Phoenix Rising, had the sickening cheek
to accuse me in the followng terms:
cfs since 1998 [Administrator]
Maarten was banned permanently after ignoring the rules despite
repeated attempts by email to
ask him to follow them. He kept reposting
forum messages on his blog
(i.e., violating copyright as well as trust and privacy) and
even forum members' pictures.
I'm sure he likes it that way because he
kept telling us that he wasn't capable of being around people (us)
so much less intelligent than him, and wasn't going to
participate anymore anyway.
M: What is in red is a lie, but
then CFS_since_1998 apparently finds writing falsehoods and
deceptions a nice passtime (Slaughterhouse 11)
Flo [Moderator] (Advocate on PR-F)
When this forum was smaller, some people posted photos of
themselves in a thread in the lounge here.
I did not like it when Maarten copied those photos and put them on
his own website.
I did no such thing: It were Patricia Carter and Awol who
asked their members to put their pictures on line, and it was I
who protested this, knowing full well how sick and sadistic
bureaucrats may be, and how dangerous ME/CFS can be for its patients
in England, the US and Holland.
So... if you want to cooperate with Patricia Carter
aka Wildaisy and CFS_Since_1998 you should now know what manner of
persons these are: I would not trust them AT ALL, since I do not trust
them AT ALL.
And now THESE folks are behind what they are pleased
to call "The International ME Association"?! See
for my take on that: At the very best, they are
incompetents who want to play "Director" and "CEO" and such in
something chartered, since "Many folks like to lead, if only a flock
of sheep" (Sancho Panza).
If these are the folks to lead patients with
ME, patients with ME will be lead nowhere but into more misery, pain
and discrimination - I say very confidently, at nearly 61, as a
psychologist and philosopher with medically diagnosed ME since 1989,
and ME since January 1, 1979.
P.S. Corrections have to be made later.
-- 25 mar 2011: I did correct the new webaddress of PR-F, for which